Universities and colleges are known for being great places to learn and party. And while sports and fitness might not be a priority, or even on the radar for any non collegiate athletes, universities and colleges are also great places to play sports or enjoy fitness activities.
Almost all universities and college have great sports and fitness facilities and offer a wide variety of sports and activities, some of which you may only find at colleges and universities. Whether you've played a million sports or the extent of your physical activity was the last year of mandatory physical education there will be something for you. Everything is located right where you are studying and potentially where you are also living so there's no need to commute. Best of all everything is free or deeply discounted.
It's the perfect time to start your fitness journey or continue one. Getting active is a great way to de-stress and meet friends. It's also a great way to kick off healthy habits for the rest of your life.
Here are some sports/fitness activities you should try while in university.
Sports That You May Only Get to Play at University:
Broomball If you want to play a team sport on ice and don't want to put on skates than try out broomball. If this sounds a bit dangerous, that's because it is and that's one of the reasons it may be hard to find outside of universities depending on where you live.
Quidditch Quidditch, the real life version was created at a university and still largely remains a university sport. It's a sport for everyone from Harry Potter fans to athletes. While running around with a stick between your legs may feel kind of silly, university is the perfect place to have fun and be silly.
Bubble Soccer Whether you love soccer or just want to knock people over and run around in an inflatable ball, bubble soccer has appeal for almost everyone. It's also somewhat ridiculous so you wouldn't find that many places offering bubble soccer leagues outside university.
Cheerleading Cheerleading's not a big sport in Canada so if you didn't get the opportunity to try it out before, now might be your only opportunity to pick up the poms. It's a great sport to try for anyone that was a dancer or gymnast.
If you've played sports your whole life, get ready for a whole new world playing sports as an adult. There are no more practices, drills or conditioning. Say goodbye to burpees, ladders and suicides and hello to trying to show up sober, fed and having slept the night before when you're playing a crucial playoff game.
University intramural sports are the perfect time to try different sports like ultimate frisbee or water polo. For anyone that's never played a team sport before it's also a great time to start.
Dodgeball is also bigger than it will ever be at any point in your life. If you go to UofA, it is pretty much everything, everywhere else it's still considered pretty awesome.
If you just want to play pick up sports, university and college is also great for this as all your friends are in one place and it's much easier to round people up and sort out schedules.
If you want to make some money, you can also try your hand at reffing or scorekeeping. The advantage to doing this for intramural sports versus children's sports is that you wouldn't get yelled at by parents, which if you've ever reffed before is a pretty good thing.
Learn something everyone else knows
Never learned how to swim or skate? You're in luck because there's classes for that, where you'll be with colleagues in the same boat. There's also dance classes, martial arts and many other things depending on which school you go to. Whether you've taken lessons that just never seemed to click or just never got the opportunity to learn, now's your chance. It's never too late.
Most universities and colleges have awesome gyms and fitness facilities as they have to keep collegiate athletes happy and fit. Luckily these are also usually open to all students too. If you've never been to the gym before, now is the perfect time to start. Take advantage of a gym orientation if there is one. If you find out that the gym's not your thing, you're in luck. Other things that you will find at universities and colleges are pools, tracks, climbing walls and ice rinks. When you can spend a lunch break climbing, skating, swimming, running or lifting you know life is good.
As a teenager, fitness classes may not be too appealing, nor are there many fitness classes geared towards teens. Fitness classes are very popular among adults though so university is a great time to try them out and see if they'll work for you. Trying them out with your friends is a lot different than trying them out with your mom. For those that fall in love with them, teaching a class or two also works great with the university schedule.
Yoga While you may have tried yoga as a kid or teen and hated it, give it another try in university. When it's your first time living without your parents and you're dealing with numerous exams and assignments you may suddenly have an idea of why people love yoga.
While not a sport or physical fitness activity something else that you should take advantage of in post secondary is counselling. There is free or very cheap counselling readily available so if you're struggling with school, relationships, being away from home or simply want to talk to someone take advantage of this.
While it may seem impossible at times, post secondary is the perfect time to try and establish a healthy work life/fun balance. Getting some exercise can help you learn, party and make more friends. It will make your post secondary experience more positive and can be a way to make some awesome new memories.
Top Photo from CollegeDegress360